Bhubaneswar, Sept. 10: The 18th Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Award Festival concluded at Rabindra Mandap on Sunday.
Artistes of Srjan, the organiser of the event, showcased an interesting Odissi repertoire on the last day of the five-day festival.
Veteran Gotipua stalwart Birabara Sahoo and thespian Ramachandra Pratihari were conferred the Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Award in the first session of the evening. Chief minister Naveen Patnaik gave away awards to the celebrated personalities for their lifetime contribution in different fields of culture and art in the state.
“I am glad that Gotipua is getting attention and popularity nowadays. I wish not much experiment is done with its authentic forms and it’s sanctity as a devotional art form lives on,” said octogenarian Sahoo.
Pratihari also hoped that Odia theatre scales new heights. “Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra was a blessing for our state. He showed us how a performing art can be taken to new heights with sheer dedication. I hope we see such efforts in the field of Odia theatre,” he said.
On Sunday evening, the show commenced with a tribute to Lord Shiv as part of the invocation segment or mangalacharan. Swami Daya Nanda Saraswati composed the sequence Bho Sambho. This Odissi piece featured various avatars and moods of Lord Shiv. Another invocatory piece, this time eulogising the female aspect of divinity by hailing Goddess Durga, was Ananda Lahari Devi Bandana. Debashish Sarkar composed the music for this ancient devotional verse written by Adiguru Shankaracharya. The dancers of Srjan displayed artistic grace as well as agile movements in this piece choreographed with traditional steps intact.
The concluding rendition was Bishwas choreographed by Ratikanta Mohapatra. The sequence included contemporary elements into the framework of traditional Odissi. Depicting a spiritual journey for truth and faith, the recital used symbolic components. Lakshmikant Palit composed the music for this item.
The five-day festival started on September 5 with performances by eminent artistes from the field of music and dance such as Hariharan, Vyjayanthimala Bali, Madhavi Mudgal, Chitresh Das, Manju Bhargavi, Karaaikuddi Mani, Anindo Chatterjee and many others.
Host Sadhna Shrivastav’s impressive anchoring added colour to the festival.
“It was a wonderful opportunity to watch renowned artistes perform in our city. There were many memorable performances,” said Deepak, a college-goer.